?The success of every small business and especially a new start up business is
dependent upon the personal qualities and abilities of the small business owner. Some
skills and abilities are more important than others to an entrepreneur but rarely are all
qualities are required and invariably some are essential to start your own business and
make it a success.
few have all the business attributes and it need not be a problem. Certainly being a
master of all is a fantastic position but unrealistic while certain personal qualities are
essential to fight the inevitable battles to come. Business battles the successful
Businesses that have grown and become medium sized and bigger are not reliant on
the business owner entirely. Employees are engaged with specialist skills and abilities
to develop and grow the business. A sole trader just starting out has to settle for a
comfortable living or have the ability to grow the business to the point where more
specialist abilities can be added to the business.
Most small business owners who start a new business do so in an area where that
small business owner has some knowledge, experience and skill. It is a natural
progression having acquired the business knowledge and experience to use those
abilities to build the business under self employment rules rather than earn profits for
The personal qualities a small business owner possesses are more likely to determine
the level of success. Abilities such as hard work, determination, persistence, intuition,
tolerance and aggression can be the bedrock of success. But the road to success is not
all slam wham bang for the entrepreneur.
Small business owners invariably work longer and harder than employees. An
employee works for wages and an adequate work performance is enough. A small
business owner is more likely to be on the job at first light, miss the coffee and dinner
break and twelve hours later announce he has to finish off for the day because he has
to go home and do the business accounting books that he started on Sunday.
Determination and persistence go hand in glove with success. Every new business
runs into problems at some time or reaches a stage where the business owner needs to
be completely focused and stick with a strategy to make the plans work. Not every
path and decision is right; its normal, determination and persistence are valuable
qualities to see through these times.
Being stubborn and single minded is sometimes the only choice and has to be
implemented and forced through. Not physical violence but the heightened state of
anxiety to push through the plan and make it work with controlled aggression and
passion. The small business owner has to be able to respond and just go with it.
Many small start up businesses go out of business within 2 to 3 years of starting a new
business. A major cause is under capitalisation which basically means they run out of
money. Liquidity is a major area of concern for every small business entrepreneur and
a cautious approach to a new business can be of considerable value.
There is a strong tendency for a new business start up to borrow money and buy new
equipment just to get started. Such businesses are taking a major risk the plans will
work. Some plans do work but rarely it is a smooth path and a better option is to build
the business and reinvest profits made.
A more cautious approach would be to start a new business without borrowing
substantial funds because if the small business owner has the ability to make a success
of the business and make money then they can usually do so without external funding
and use the profits made to build the business in the future. The sound reason for a
small business or a start up business to borrow money is to already be showing a good
financial performance and use extra funds to speed up future success while borrowing
funds with no track record is a gamble and a gamble which fails only too often.
Terry Cartwright is a qualified accountant in the UK designs Accounting Software on
excel spreadsheets providing complete Small Business Accounting Software solutions
for with single and double entry Bookkeeping Software packages for limited
companies and self employed business